Engaging Young Children During Pandemic Times
Life has become so uncertain, what we took for granted has become a luxury today. The COVID-19 pandemic is pathetic all over the world. Unless there is any necessity, we don’t step out of our home, our safe zone. As a family, we have readjusted to the new norms and learnt to live with restrictions. Being indoors is the only option available in the current pandemic. On one hand there are positives and the other hand, there are some negatives.
As parents we pamper our children with all their materialistic demands, the current scenario has forced us to live with huge restrictions. It’s extremely demanding on us as parents and to manage our child at home where there are no relatives and friends for the past one year. Grandparents play a very vital role during this pandemic period, they support us in productively engaging our children for constant growth.
Here are some key points for the parents and grandparents to engage a child constructively at home:
- No to Rigid rules
Do not have rigid rules for the children at home. I mean specific time for sleeping, waking up, bathing, studying, playing etc… Make sure the children do all the regular tasks everyday but with little flexibility in order to be stress free.
- Screen time
Increase in screen time is going to be harmful and detrimental for young children. Virtual class is mandatory till covid -19 gets over, so watching other favourite shows on television, playing online games can be reduced. It is suggested minimal use of screen time is preferred.
- Take turns
Take turns amongst your family members in engaging the child to ease out the pressure. As you take turns, each one will have different ideas, your child will not feel idle or bored, interacting with various family members also helps to boost the learning process. Taking turns strategy is a very crucial step for parents to adopt as they can eliminate stress developed due to parenting.
- Eating habits
Children are forced to stay indoors till the pandemic subsides. On regular days children usually go to school, attend various classes and play outdoors. As the regular activity or mobility for the child is not there to the original extent, it is advisable to modify the eating habits such as
- Avoid oily and fatty food
- Give lots of vegetables and fruits in case of non-vegetarian take more fish and eggs
- Avoid processed food
- Say a big “NO” to junk food
- Encourage healthy fruit or vegetable salads as snacks
- Time for physical activity
One of the most important tasks for the parents is to wake up the child before 7 AM or maximum 8 AM. As there is no school, there is more tendency to be lazy and wake up late in the morning. Motivate your child to wake up early in the morning and encourage them to get exposed in the morning sun and do some outdoor activity like gardening, playing, running, skipping, exercise and yoga.
- Study time
In this prevailing tough time, it is a must to study for an hour either morning or evening as virtual sessions go only for a short time. There is no chance of meeting a teacher at school in person. A fixed study time is mandatory to tide over boredom, not lose continuity of study habits and keep the mind engaged constructively.
Lakshmi Sakthi Alagappan lives in Thanjavur in Tamilnadu, India. She is an administrative officer at Blossom Public School. She likes reading books, listening to music and surfing.
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this post are the personal views of the author. They do not necessarily reflect the views of The Mom Store.